Call it social media infrastructure for the modern age. Often derided as a gimmick or an eyesore, the 'Ottawa' sign in the Byward Market, has become a fixture in the capital and a spot for tourists to snap and share.

The sign started coming down on Monday at the corner of York and Sussex, to make way for a new one.

The sign was originally put up in 2017 to celebrate Canada 150 celebrations, but it has reached the "end of it's life cycle" according to a city news release.

"The Ottawa sign was originally planned as a temporary summer feature as part of Inspiration Village in 2017. Later tha year, it was adopted by the city due to its popularity", said city planner Kim Copeland.

Monday, workers began plucking the letters away, using a crane to remove them.

Many cities around the word have been erecting signs like this, as a way for tourists to take pictures, promoting the city.

Toronto's 7 large glowing letters, set up in front of city hall, were originally supposed to be temporary during the Pan American Games.  The Toronto sign became so popular with tourists, with millions of shares on social media so the city made it permanent. It was also rehabilitated after years of wear and tear. 

The ‘Ottawa’ sign in the ByWard Market, while less popular than Toronto's location, has been featured in tourist photos since it went up in 2017.

The new sign will be in place in time for Christmas.